Manchester City’s Mario Balotelli lonely in England and would only leave the Premier League to return home to Italy

Mario Balotelli feels that he has adapted well to the Premier League but admitted that if he were to leave Manchester City he would return to Italy because he has no real friends in England.

The former Inter striker arrived at Eastlands in the summer of 2010 and, after a difficult start to his career in the Premier League, he has begun to justify his reputation as one of the most exciting young attacking players in world football.

However, Balotelli has confessed that while he is happy with his progress on the field, he still feels a little lonely off it.

“I am 21 and already I have lived away from home for nearly two years,” he told L’Uomo Vogue. “I have adapted quite well – in spite of the huge [cultural] differences.

“But I have no real friends here. If I had to move, right at this minute, I would choose Italy.”

Balotelli also admitted that the intrusive and sensationalist nature of the British tabloid press has been a major problem for him settling in Manchester.

“If I buy a Fiat Uno, I read that for a guy like me it would have been more suitable to buy a Ferrari,” he lamented. “If I choose the Ferrari, they write that I should keep my feet on the ground and buy an Uno.

“If I laugh, I’m not serious enough; I don’t laugh, I’m a sulk who doesn’t enjoy doing the best job in the world.

“Here in England, the tabloid press writes about everything – and always exaggerates.”

Balotelli has also been upset by claims in the media that he is unhappy at City and insists that he is enjoying the ongoing battle for supremacy with bitter rivals Manchester United.

“The newspapers are saying that I want to get away from Manchester but I’ve never spoken to them,” he told Radio Radio.

“They can say what they want, but I’m in Manchester, am under contract with City and until the right time, will not talk about a new contract.

“[The Premier League] has been a new experience, even if at first it was difficult, but if I have to tell the whole truth now, then I find myself really well.

“[The team] must stay focused and try not to lose our heads, as happens sometimes, and we must lose as few points as possible. At the end of the season we’ll see if we are first or second.”